We do indeed exist in a time of change! The pace of transformation in the resource management sector remains a challenge to all. The AIEN recognises opportunities available for creating change in both domestic and international contexts.

Since Kurt penned the April AIEN newsletter, several important initiatives have been progressed.

Following the success of the Energy from Waste Forum, held in Ballarat in February 2019, the AIEN published its most recent communiqué, The Role of Energy from Waste in A Circular Economy: Creating a Stable Project Structure.

This communiqué is based on the proceedings of, and learnings from the annual Ballarat Energy from Waste Forums (2016 to 2019). The AIEN believes it important to distil those proceeding and learnings to inform future debate and record the evolution of the deliberations to this point.

The 2020 Ballarat Energy from Waste Forum is a much-anticipated event, and the AIEN thanks all those who have submitted abstracts for the event. The forum Committee is currently hard at work selecting the papers and assembling the program. We will be advertising the forum program in due course.

On 9 May 2019, the AIEN hosted a very successful event focused on plastic waste and the challenges it presented.

Although the management of plastic wastes remains in a state of flux, it was refreshing to hear of the promise of several emergent Australian-based technologies and the work currently being progressed to address the issue. The AIEN looks forward to the development of important management solutions for plastics amid the prevailing gloom as recognition of the challenges associated with waste plastic become a more ‘mainstream’ issue.

The AIEN remains somewhat gratified that all Australian jurisdictions are increasingly recognising the importance of action in establishing a circular economy and the importance of addressing specific issues related to energy from waste and plastics in particular.

To this end, the AIEN continues to forward submissions in response to the discussion papers and issues papers as they are released by each jurisdiction. In the last 12 months, we have formally responded to the following:

  • Waste to Energy in the ACT Discussion Paper (November 2018)
  • South Australia – Turning the Tide on Single-Use Plastic Products Discussion Paper (February 2019)
  • Queensland Draft Waste Management and Resource Recovery Strategy (April 2019)
  • Victorian Greens – Parliamentary Enquiry into the Recycling and Waste Management System (May 2019)
  • Queensland Draft Resource Recovery Industries – 10 Year Roadmap and Action Plan submission (June 2019)
  • ACT – Phasing out single-use plastics Discussion Paper (July 2019)
  • Circular Economy Issues Paper (VIC) (August 2019)
  • Energy from Waste Policy – Discussion paper for consultation (QLD) (August 2019)

We invite you all to review those submissions by referencing the AIEN website.

You would have noticed that the “China Sword” has begun to seriously focus attention on resource management and the importance of developing a circular economy in Australia.  The AIEN remains committed to ensuring the opportunities presented through establishment of a Circular Economy can be realised for the benefit of us all.